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Black Garden Ants

black garden ants

The Common Black Garden Ant

Black garden ants, also known as Lasius niger, are small black ants that are commonly found in gardens and homes. They are about 2.5-3mm in size and are known for their distinctive long legs and black or dark brown color.

Damage Caused by Black Garden Ants

Black garden ants are mostly harmless, but they can cause a nuisance in homes by invading pantries and kitchens in search of food. They are attracted to sweet and sugary substances, and will often leave a trail of ants leading from their nest to a food source. If left unchecked, these ants can cause significant damage to stored food items, such as grains, fruits, and sweets. They can also contaminate food items with their feces and secretions.

black garden ant

Where to Find Black Garden Ants in the Home

Black garden ants are often found in homes during the warm summer months, when they search for food and water. They typically build their nests in soil and wood, and can be found in walls, floorboards, and baseboards. They can also be found in garden areas, under stones and rocks, and in woodpiles.

What Attracts Black Garden Ants

Black garden ants are attracted to a variety of food sources, including sugary substances, honeydews produced by aphids, and other insects. They are also attracted to moist environments, and will often be found near sources of water such as sinks and drains.  If left unattended, these attractions can lead to an ant infestation, which can be very difficult to eradicate.

Options to Get Rid of Black Garden Ants

There are several methods to get rid of black garden ants, including both chemical and natural remedies. Chemical methods include using ant baits and insecticides, while natural remedies include using vinegar, lemon juice, and borax.

Ant Baits: Ant baits contain a slow-acting insecticide that is designed to attract ants and kill them after they have taken the bait back to their nest. Ant baits are a popular option for getting rid of black garden ants, as they are easy to use and effective.

Insecticides: Insecticides can be applied directly to ant colonies, killing the ants and disrupting their nesting patterns. However, insecticides can be harmful to pets and other wildlife, and should be used with caution.

Vinegar: Vinegar is a natural ant repellent, and can be used to clean surfaces that have been contaminated by ant trails. Simply mix equal parts water and vinegar, and spray the solution on ant trails to deter ants from coming back.

Lemon Juice: Lemon juice is another natural ant repellent (which can sometimes also work with coastal brown ants), and can be used in the same way as vinegar. Simply mix equal parts water and lemon juice, and spray the solution on ant trails to prevent ants from coming back.

Borax: Borax is a naturally occurring mineral that is toxic to ants. It can be mixed with sugar or honey to create a bait that will attract ants and kill them. However, borax should be used with caution, as it is toxic to humans and pets if ingested in large amounts.

In conclusion, black garden ants are a common problem in homes, but they can be easily controlled with a combination of chemical and natural remedies. To prevent ant infestations, it is important to keep food items stored in sealed containers, and to clean up any spills or crumbs promptly. By taking these simple steps, you can keep your home free from these unwanted pests.

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